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madhhab malikite, hanafi madhhab
A madhhab Arabic: مذهب‎‎ maḏhab, IPA: ˈmæðhæb, "doctrine"; pl مذاهب maḏāhib, mæˈðaːhɪb is a school of thought within fiqh Islamic jurisprudence In the first 150 years of Islam, there were numerous madhahib, most of which have become extinct or merged with other schools The Amman Message, which was endorsed in 2005 by prominent Islamic scholars around the world, recognized four Sunni schools Hanafi, Maliki, Shafi'i, Hanbali, two Shia schools Ja'fari, Zaidi, the Ibadi school and the Zahiri school1


  • 1 Development
  • 2 Ancient schools of law
  • 3 List of schools
    • 31 Sunni
    • 32 Shia
    • 33 Ibadi
    • 34 Amman Message
  • 4 See also
  • 5 References
  • 6 Further reading


It has been asserted that madhahib were consolidated in the 9th and 10th centuries as a means of excluding dogmatic theologians, government officials and non-Sunni sects from religious discourse2 Historians have differed regarding the times at which the various schools emerged One interpretation is that Sunni Islam was initiallywhen split into four groups: the Hanafites, Malikites, Shafi'ites and Zahirites3 Later, the Hanbalites and Jarirites developed two more schools; then various dynasties effected the eventual exclusion of the Jarirites;4 eventually, the Zahirites were also excluded when the Mamluk Sultanate established a total of four independent judicial positions, thus solidifying the Maliki, Hanafi, Shafi'i and Hanbali schools2 The Ottoman Empire later reaffirmed the official status of these four schools as a reaction to Shi'ite Persia5 Some are of the view that Sunni jurisprudence falls into two groups: Ahl al-Ra'i "people of opinions", emphasizing scholarly judgment and reason and Ahl al-Hadith "people of traditions", emphasizing strict interpretation of scripture6

10th century Shi'ite scholar Ibn al-Nadim named eight groups: Maliki, Hanafi, Shafi'i, Zahiri, Imami Shi'ite, Ahl al-Hadith, Jariri and Kharijite47 In the 12th century Jariri and Zahiri schools were absorbed by the Shafi'i school8 Ibn Khaldun defined only three Sunni madhahib: Hanafi, Zahiri, and one encompassing the Shafi'i, Maliki and Hanbali schools as existing initially,910 noting that by the 14th century historian the Zahiri school had become extinct,1112 only for it to be revived again in parts of the Muslim world by the mid-20th century131415

Historically, the fiqh schools were often in political and academic conflict with one another, vying for favor with the ruling government in order to have their representatives appointed to legislative and especially judiciary positions5 Geographer and historian Al-Muqaddasi once satirically categorized competing madhahib with contrasting personal qualities: Hanafites, highly conscious of being hired for official positions, appeared deft, well-informed, devout and prudent; Malikites, dull and obtuse, confined themselves to observance of prophetic tradition; Shafi'ites were shrewd, impatient, understanding and quick-tempered; Zahirites haughty, irritable, loquacious and well-to-do; Shi'ites, entrenched and intractable in old rancor, enjoyed riches and fame; and Hanbalites, anxious to practice what they preached, were charitable and inspiring16 While such descriptions were almost assuredly humorous in nature, ancient differences were less to do with actual doctrinal opinions than with maneuvering for adherents and influencecitation needed

Ancient schools of lawedit

It is usually assumed that no regional school developed in Egypt unlike in Syria, Iraq and the Hijaz Joseph Schacht states that the legal milieu of Fustat ancient Cairo was a branch of the Medinan school of law17 Regarding judicial practices, the qadis judges of Fustat resorted to the procedure called "al-yamin ma'a l-shahid", that is, the ability of the judge to base his verdict on one single witness and the oath of the claimant, instead of two witnesses as was usually required Such a procedure was quite common under the early Umayyads, but by the early Abbasid period it had disappeared in Iraq and it was now regarded as the 'amal "good practice" of Medina Up until the end of the 8th century, the qadis of Fustat were still using this "Medinan" procedure and differentiated themselves from Iraqi practices From a doctrinal point of view, however, the legal affiliation of Egypt could be more complex The principal Egyptian jurist in the second half of the 8th century is al-Layth b Sa'd18 The only writing of his that has survived is a letter he wrote to Malik b Anas, which has been preserved by Yahya b Ma'in and al-Fasawi In this letter, he proclaims his theoretical affiliation to the Medinan methodology and recognizes the value of the 'amal Nevertheless, he distances himself from the Medinan School by opposing a series of Medinan legal views He maintains that the common practice in other cities is also valuable, and thus implicitly defends the Egyptians’ adherence to their own local tradition Thus it is possible that, even though it did not develop into a formal school of law, a specific Egyptian legal milieu was distinct of the Medinan School in the 8th century19

List of schoolsedit

Generally, Sunnis have a single preferred madhhab from region to region, but also believe that ijtihad must be exercised by the contemporary scholars capable of doing so Most rely on taqlid, or acceptance of religious rulings and epistemology from a higher religious authority in deferring meanings of analysis and derivation of legal practices instead of relying on subjective readings2021

Experts and scholars of fiqh follow the usul principles of their own native madhhab, but they also study the usul, evidences, and opinions of other madhahib


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Sunni Islam

Sunni schools of jurisprudence are each named after the classical jurist who taught them The four primary Sunni schools are the Hanafi, Shafi'i, Maliki and Hanbali rites The Zahiri school remains in existence but outside of the mainstream, while the Jariri, Laythi, Awza'i and Thawri have become extinct

The extant schools share most of their rulings, but differ on the particular practices which they may accept as authentic and the varying weights they give to analogical reason and pure reason

  • The Hanafi school was founded by Abu Hanifa an-Nu‘man It is followed by Muslims in the Levant, Central Asia, Afghanistan, Pakistan, India, Bangladesh, Western Lower Egypt, Iraq, Turkey, the Balkans and by most of Russia's Muslim community There are movements within this school such as Barelvis and Deobandi, which are concentrated in South Asia
  • The Maliki school was founded by Malik ibn Anas It is followed by Muslims in North Africa, West Africa, the United Arab Emirates, Kuwait, in parts of Saudi Arabia and in Upper Egypt The Murabitun World Movement follows this school as well In the past, it was also followed in parts of Europe under Islamic rule, particularly Islamic Spain and the Emirate of Sicily
  • The Shafi'i school was founded by Muhammad ibn Idris ash-Shafi'i It is followed by Muslims in Saudi Arabia, Eastern Lower Egypt, Indonesia, Malaysia, Jordan, Palestine, the Philippines, Singapore, Somalia, Thailand, Yemen, Kurdistan, and the Mappilas of Kerala and Konkani Muslims of India It is the official school followed by the governments of Brunei and Malaysia
  • The Hanbali school was founded by Ahmad ibn Hanbal It is followed by Muslims in Qatar, most of Saudi Arabia and minority communities in Syria and Iraq The majority of the Salafist movement claims to follow this school
  • The Zahiri school was founded by Dawud al-Zahiri It is followed by minority communities in Morocco and Pakistan In the past, it was also followed by the majority of Muslims in Mesopotamia, Portugal, the Balearic Islands, North Africa and parts of Spain


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Shia Islam
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